It’s easy! Just follow these DIY steps
Whether in the kitchen or bathroom, your wooden cabinets are exposed to a wide variety of external debris. They get soiled extremely quickly. They are exposed to grease when you cook. Everything gets spilled on them. You may not even notice splattering a bit of ice cream onto the surface below while you’re enjoying the treat. Not until it dries, gets sticky and attracts ants, that is. It’s only until you’ve reached such severity that you are forced to recognize just how filthy your cabinets have become. You’ve got to clean them, and make it a rule that you will not sit back and let it get this bad again. You are going to fight the dirt, grease and grime. You are going to be proactive and take preventive measures. And this is how you do it –
First off, there are excellent commercial cleaners you can use that have great effect. As you know, I always prefer the organic ones. In fact, you can easily concoct your own cabinet cleaner with ingredients you probably have in your kitchen that are eco friendly. If they’re not on hand they are affordable and widely accessible.
I’ve recommended it before, that’s because a vinegar solution works so well. In fact, when it comes to greasy cabinets there is none better. It’s all natural. Not like some store bought cleaners that may actually cause chemical damage. And it’s easy, too. All you need to do is mix a half and half solution of vinegar and warm water in a plastic spray bottle. Press the trigger and apply to the cabinets before letting them sit for two minutes. Then wipe the surface down with a clean cloth. If you’re dealing with some really tough grime, try adding a couple of drops of liquid dish detergent to the solution – that should yield the desired results.
Whatever type of cleaner you use, the same basic approach probably applies. For the outer surface of the cabinets, spray and wipe using a soft lint free cloth if possible. Then, apply the cleaner to the drawer pulls and door handles and rub clean with the cloth. Next, dip a toothbrush into your choice of cleaner and scrub the hardware. Apply the same technique to the immediately surrounding wood and the indentations of any carved design trim. Spray the cleaner onto the inside of the doors and drawers as well. With an additional unused cloth, dampen in water and wipe off the spray residue from the inner and outer surfaces as well as from all hardware. Finally dry it all with a fresh clean towel.
There will be occasions where you have a monster of a stubborn stain. Ones caused by syrup or chocolate can be particularly difficult. For this you are best off making a special paste. All you need is salt and (you guessed it) vinegar. Mix and grind the two together until it turns into paste and dip a toothbrush in it. Proceed to lightly scrub the affected area. Be mindful not to apply too much pressure, and never use a metal scrubbie (as you may easily scratch the wood). When finished, rinse the paste off with clean water and pat dry with a clean towel.
If you don’t happen to have vinegar around but you need to use something in a pinch – you have a food stain emergency – it’s baking soda to the rescue! Simply sprinkle it onto a clean wet sponge, and rub the stain away. If you need to step it up a bit, use light pressure with a toothbrush (or a nylon bristle scrubber) and be mindful not to cause scratches.
And there you have it – the easiest way to keep your cabinets well maintained and clean. Now you can protect them from potential stains in the future by mixing vegetable oil and vinegar in equal parts. Rub it into the cabinet surface with a light circular motion. Then with a clean soft cloth buff it out. You will reveal a shine that is also stain resistant!